We can't believe that tickets for our fall show on October 1-2, will be going on sale in just a few short weeks. We hope all of you have started planning for the show because we know we have! You'll be able to get your hands on tickets, General Admission and Early Bird, on September 1, so mark your calendars. Don't forget about our special lodging deals available now on our lodging page at www.ThreeSpeckledHens.com. Book soon! Most of these deals will expire at the end of the month.
Before things get too well underway with the show, we wanted to sneak in a trip to one of our favorite antiques shows. We recently returned from an overnight jaunt to the Alameda Point Antiques Faire. Located on the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay, Alameda Point was formerly the Alameda Naval Air Station. With its stunning panoramic views of the San Francisco skyline, the Bay Bridge, the Oakland Port facility, Marin County and the sparkling waters of San Francisco Bay, these old aircraft runways provide an ideal site for what is certainly the largest antiques show on the West Coast.
Photo Credit (above): Alameda Point Antiques Faire
In the infancy of the Hens show, we would make the trip to Alameda every few months in search of new and interesting dealers for our show. The dealers we sought had to offer unique inventory, have a flare for staging and the desire to expand their customer base down to the Central Coast. We also discovered some great deals. The finds were fabulous and plentiful, and we always came home in cars or trucks stuffed to capacity.
While we no longer have to scavenge for dealers to fill our show, we do still keep on the lookout for new dealers and finds for our own collections. How can you say no to an entire day of shopping near the City by the Bay?
An early start on Saturday morning always begins with the prerequisite stop at Starbucks for morning joe and scones. Our 3-½ hour drive north always turns into an 8-hour adventure as we stop at as many antiques and vintage shops as possible. Seeing what’s new, meeting shop owners and passing out our event flyers are always on the itinerary. Did I mention shopping? On this trip Susi and Carrie scored Civil War bullet shells with perfect patina. How beautiful they will look displayed in an ironstone dish!
After a lunch stop and several more antiques shops, we arrive in Alameda and check in to our favorite hotel, The Hawthorn Suites, just in time for dinner. This hotel not only provides comfortable lodging but has the added benefit of being right across the street from one of our favorite restaurants.
Otaez Mexican Restaurant specializes in authentic Mexican cuisine and killer margaritas. A meal at Otaez is always a must on an Alameda weekend! After we have our fill of enchiladas, chili rellenos and a second round of margaritas, we make the trek back across the street to our hotel. Before we head to the spa for a late night soak, we try to catch up on Hen business. Many of our post-margarita meetings are only as productive as you can imagine! Off to the spa and then bed.
Market carts in tow, we head off the following morning into the acres of booths that are the Alameda Point Antiques Faire. Over 800 dealers, and we have to view every one of them! Up and down the aisles we go, always on the lookout for booths that catch our eye and the fabulous finds we can’t live without.
For us, another one of the highlights of Alameda is seeing many of our dealers that also sell at our shows. After chatting them up, supplying them with more of our flyers (they always run out of them at Alameda) and quick hugs, we’re off to the next row of booths. Our dealers are busy selling and we’re busy shopping so our rendezvous are brief but always enjoyable. By 1pm we are spent! It’s time for lunch and the drive back to the Central Coast.
One of our fantastic dealers showing off some Hen collateral at Alameda.
We came away from this weekend trip knowing three things. The first is that we miss traveling with our fourth Hen, Lettice. She had her grandchildren for the week and thought the beach might be more fun for them than shopping! The second is that we won't be waiting so long to go to the Alameda Point Antiques Faire again (the Faire is held on the first Sunday of every month). We all found great stuff! The third and final thing we realized is that the Three Speckled Hens need to walk more and eat less. With over 800 dealers to see, it's certainly a workout!
Though exhausting, our trips to Alameda are certainly worth it. We love seeing our dealers at other shows, being inspired by fellow Junkers and always keeping an eye out for new and inspiring dealers to bring back to our own shows as we strive to bring you, our fans, the best antiques shows on the Central Coast!